The Bengals are back in Cincinnati for mandatory minicamp this week, and one of the key players to watch is rookie receiver Tyler Boyd.
Drafted in the second round out of Pitt in this year's NFL Draft, Boyd is in line to take on a big role in the offense to help offset the losses of Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu, not to mention Tyler Eifert being out with an ankle injury for the foreseeable future.
But that won't happen if Boyd is dealing with an injury that's keeping him off the field. According to FOX 19 reporter Joe Danneman, Boyd was seen with a knee brace during individual drills and did not take part in team workouts at Tuesday's minicamp session.
Just finished open media time at #Bengals mini camp. Maualuga and Boyd aren't in jerseys/helmets. Doing individual work with trainers.— Joe Danneman (@FOX19Joe) June 14, 2016
Boyd has a brace on his right knee. Seemed to be moving well in agility drills, though.— Joe Danneman (@FOX19Joe) June 14, 2016
The good news is it doesn't appear to be anything serious since Boyd was present and doing some work. Still, missing any practice times hurts for new guys and/or rookies, so hopefully Boyd is back practicing sooner rather than later.
One of the best college receivers of the past three years, Boyd was an instant-impact guy the day he stepped onto a college football field. He opened his career with 85 catches for 1,174 yards with seven touchdowns as a freshman in 2013.
Boyd followed that up with 78 grabs for 1,261 yards and eight scores, and his 27.6-yard kickoff return average ranked 10th in the NCAA in 2014. He finished 2015 with a career-high 91 catches to go with 926 yards and six scores. Boyd also finished his career averaging 24.4 yards on kickoff returns and 8.8 yards on punt returns.
Between his receiving ability and even his small background in the return game, Boyd has likely been getting a ton of work in OTAs so far, so maybe this is just a tweak he suffered during that work.
With Boyd sidelined, other rookies like Cody Core, Alonzo Russell and Alex Erickson figure to get more work in and show what they're made of.